The Construction of Racial Identity in Children of Mixed Parentage

Mixed Metaphors
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For several decades the issues of race, identity and child development have been of major concern to policy makers and practitioners in social services. This book is a major contribution to this literature, and offers a radically new way of looking at some of these issues. Based on intensive research on interracial families with young children, the book reviews the previous literature relating to racial identity development, especially relating to biracial children, and shows it to be based on flawed assumptions.

Using intensive observations and in-depth interviews with parents of biracial children the author shows the many ways in which inter-racial families deal with issues of identity and difference. He concludes with a discussion of alternative conceptions of identity, race and development which will provide both practitioners and policy makers with new ways to think about these issues.
  • Published: Jul 01 1996
  • Pages: 224
  • 233 x 155mm
  • ISBN: 9781853023767
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Press Reviews

  • Adoption UK

    I would recommend this book as essential reading to all social work practitioners and policy makers in order to broaden their knowledge and widen the debate. For those lay people interested in the debate on identity and particularly racial identity I would also recommend the book.
  • British Journal of Social Work

    Helps to build a fascinating picture of the background of those who form inter-racial partnerships, the ensuing family dynamics, and the handling of "difference"... Katz's book represents a very useful and important addition to the literature on racial identity, a recommended read.
  • Child and Family Social Work

    An important contribution to the literature.
  • Emotional and Behavioural Difficulties

    Interesting and honest piece of research... Generous in giving a wealth of information about the theories of human development and marginalisation which informed the author's research. Anyone who is embarking on similar qualitative research will read with great interest his detailed account of the methodology. This book has relevance to identity construction in all children, although its main purpose is to look at those who start life with a greater challenge.
  • Journal of Adolescence

    `Katz's aim is to encourage practitioners and policy-makers to think again. Many will find his family case studies and/or theoretical discussions stimulating.'
  • Journal of Child Psychology and Psychiatry

    This is a most useful book, worth reading for its subtlety, its lack of polemic... To be recommended.
  • Clinical Child Psychology and Psychiatry

    Katz has provided us with a basis for future research in this subject. The book will provide a useful background for those intending to do qualitative research on the identity of mixed-parentage children.
  • Sage Race Relations Abstracts

    A significant addition to the literature in this vexed area.
  • Adoption and Fostering

    There are some excellent insights, Katz makes a very good case for the narrative approach to the construction of identity... Katz has been both courageous and thought provoking.
  • The Psychologist

    Katz's book is a well-written account of the develpment of of his thinking, methodology and the research he conducted through the 1980s to the present.